For train crash victims, wait for answers goes on

Updated: 2011-09-17 07:50

By Xin Dingding (China Daily)

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BEIJING - A full report into the cause of the deadly Wenzhou train crash is still being drafted, a source with the State Administration of Work Safety said on Friday, as the authority comes under increasing pressure to fulfill a pledge to publish its findings this month.

"The report is being drafted," said the source, who did not want to be identified discussing the investigation. "It has not been submitted to the State Council for approval, as some media reported."

The source did not indicate when the public can expect the final report.

Following the accident on July 23, when 40 people were killed and almost 200 others injured, the State Council set up an investigation team. At its first meeting on July 28, Wang Dexue, deputy director of the work safety administration, reportedly said that a written report would be finished by Sept 15.

The authority has since denied Wang promised to deliver the report by Thursday. "What he said is mid-September. Sept 15 is the date the media took that to mean," said the source.

However, that has not prevented concern among media commentators and netizens, who went online on Friday to express their disappointment at the fact that the report was not published.

"Will keeping promises become a miracle we rarely see?" wrote a netizen posting as Zuolong Juntao on Sina Weibo, China's largest micro-blogging website.

Chen Lihua, who is still receiving treatment for injuries he received in the crash, said he watches television and reads newspapers every day, just hoping to hear the conclusion of the government's probe into the accident.

"What I want to know the most is the truth behind the tragedy, not how much compensation I can get. I want to see those who are to blame receive the punishment they deserve," he said.

The July 23 accident happened when a high-speed train rear-ended another during a thunderstorm on a bridge in Wenzhou, Zhejiang province.

Initial investigations suggested that a Beijing-based research and design institute run by China Railway Signal and Communication Corporation was responsible, as it designed the flawed signaling equipment.

Huang Yi, spokesman for the State Administration of Work Safety, also said that Wenzhou railway station's electricity division should shoulder some responsibilities, as it failed to handle malfunctions in the signaling equipment quickly enough.

The crash was "completely avoidable" and "should not have happened", he said.

Wu Yiyao contributed to this story.